70 bronchoscopies later, baby gets new life

New Delhi, June 27 (IANS) Anushka Tewari is only 21 months old, but she has had 70 bronchoscopies in the course of a year-long stay at the Sir Gangaram Hospital here. On Thursday, doctors said she was recovering and could go home.

The baby, daughter of Pankaj and Pinky Tewari of Bhopal, had suffered acute pneumonia after accidentally ingesting 15 ml baby oil, when she was only nine months old.

The oil entered Anushka’s lungs. Besides pneumonia, the baby also had respiratory trouble, and needed to be on ventilator.

“I went to various hospitals. They told me that my daughter does not have much time and referred me to the ICU of Ganga Ram Hospital,” Tewari, who had to quit his job to keep pace with Anushka’s treatment, said.

Anil Sachdeva, one of the doctors who treated the baby, said: “The body does not have mechanisms to clear oil particles. Thus it was unable to maintain oxygen. We had to do more than 70 bronchoscopies to clear oil from the lungs.”

Bronchoscopy is a medical technique of visualising the airways for diagnostic and therapeutic purposes.

This is the first case in the world where so many bronchoscopies have been done, said Sachdeva.

The parents are relieved to be able to take their child back home. Though she has not fully recovered, Anushka is fit to lead a normal life now.

“Seventy percent of the oil she ingested has been removed. The procedure of bronchoscopy will go on till the oil is removed completely. But now, she can lead a normal life”, Dhiren Gupta, another doctor who treated her, said.

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